Live forward

Psycho-neurological boarding school photo
It’s Yaroslav. I met him during a monitoring visit by the National Preventive Mechanism to one of the geriatric clinics for the elderly. This clinic was not among one of the best. It was a sad and depressing place which suited the general mood of its residents. It’s rather unusual to realize that in such a place there can still be optimistic people. That someone here can experience emotions that are completely opposite to hopelessness and despair.

This man stands out from other patients of the clinic by his totally stable attitude to life. He believed that the degree of personal freedom from unexpected circumstances depended on such an attitude. An incredibly positive person who turned Beethoven’s words “Die or Live!” into his life principle, supporting and inspiring others in the clinic with his ability to enjoy every new day and simple things.

Visit to psycho-neurological boarding school
Living conditions psychoneurological boarding school

– Once I was told: “You have no fingers. You are a disabled person. No longer hope for anything.” I stopped hoping and just started living. And now I can say that life is beautiful. That’s what I realized when I lost something. That’s what living people lack. They don’t feel this life, they bury themselves –  someone does that when they are 20 and then walks like a living corpse for the next 50 years. It was when I lost my hands that I felt a taste for life. I was able to enjoy it differently – somehow deeper, not superficially. I felt that I became different, that’s why I support people around me and they are drawn to me in turn.

When you don’t have hands, at first all thoughts are only about it. They don’t allow seeing anything beyond the pain, inferiority, otherness and you are constantly thinking how to live further. Everything starts to seem like surviving and fighting the circumstances. And then at some point you just start to live. Live even better than before. A paradox, right? You lose something important and in return you get something more valuable – a different outlook on life.

Listening to him, I envied him. Just imagine – envied a person with a disability, envied his life stance. At the time, I thought he was more alive than me.

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